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Core Pursuit 1 – A Responsive, Transparent and Improved Bar Secretariat

Core Pursuit 1 A Responsive, Transparent and Improved Bar Secretariat

Over the past two (2) decades of my active engagement with the Nigerian Bar Association, I have visited, transacted business at and interacted with the National Secretariat of the NBA (and the General Secretary and Staff thereat).

The Secretariat of the NBA plays a critical role in the professional lives of members of the Association, and the importance of a vibrant and effective National Secretariat cannot be over-emphasized. Concerns have been expressed about the responsiveness and efficiency of the Secretariat; the transparency of the processes and offices of the NBA; and the synergy between the Secretariat and the Branches, Sections and Fora of the NBA.

In the new digital economy and with the grave social and economic upheavals that a post Covid-19 legal profession is expected to face, the importance of a Fit For Purpose Bar Secretariat has become critical. There is no time for 'on-the-job' learning. The Bar needs a helmsman at the Secretariat who understands the issues and has the demonstrated relevant experience and expertise to hit the ground running because two (2) years is quite a short period of time.

In offering to serve as General Secretary for 2020 2022, I propose to improve on the great work that previous General Secretaries of the NBA have done in building a virile Secretariat - in three (3) key respects: responsiveness and efficiency, transparency, and improved synergy.

a) Responsiveness and Efficiency: The NBA Secretariat needs to serve Nigerian Lawyers better in an efficient and responsive manner. I propose to pursue this by:

i) Professionalizing the secretariat through the use of appropriate man-power deployment and training of members of staff to adequately meet the needs of all members of the Association in a timely and cost-efficient manner;

ii) Leveraging on technology to enable quick and efficient web and App based interaction between the Secretariat, members of the Association, and the general public, in a relaxed and user-friendly atmosphere; and

iii) Developing and deploying an efficient complaint mechanism whereby members and third-parties can make enquiries from and complaints to the Secretariat directly, and same would be dealt with and resolved in record time.

b) Transparency: The NBA Secretariat must not only serve its members who subscribe to the tenets of the Association in an efficient and responsive manner, it must do so in a transparent and accountable manner. I propose to achieve this by:

i) Ensuring open and accessible leadership of the Secretariat;

ii) Adhering to the provisions of the Constitution and all relevant protocols that promote transparency and accountability in running the affairs of the Secretariat;

iii) Avoiding conflict of interest, and ensuring propriety and full disclosure of any pecuniary interest of the General Secretary and members of staff of the Secretariat in all and any interface with members of the Association and the general public; and

iv) Updating members monthly on the activities of the Association - via email to every member of the Association whose details are captured in the NBA Database.

c) Improved Synergy: The importance of an effective and coordinated interface between the Secretariat and other organs of the NBA (branches, sections and fora) cannot be over-emphasized. I propose to focus on this by:

i) Promoting better interaction between the Secretariat and the various Branches - which are the true organs through which the NBA functions;

ii) Strengthening the relationship between the Secretariat and the Branch Secretariats in order to improve Branch capacity for effective dissemination of information and coordination of NBA programmes; and

iii) Forging a better understanding and cooperation between the Secretariat and the Leadership/Secretariat of the various Sections and Fora of the NBA.

If you elect me as General Secretary of the NBA, I Pledge to serve with the passion, integrity and efficiency for which I am well known, and to pursue this and five (5) other Core Pursuits which I have elaborated on in MY MANIFESTO to deliver a Fit For Purpose Bar Secretariat.

I will place my time, energy, talents, experience and resources at the disposal of the Bar for the next two years, and offer the kind of premium stewardship which the Bar definitely needs at this time. The Bar needs a great scribe. I have been tried, tested and adjudged to be one.

I seek your mandate. Lets do this together.

Warm regards,

Alexander Nduka MUOKA
Candidate for General Secretary of the NBA

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